Cougars Outlast Gators at Big Dance
When Jimmer Fredette planted a seed with Florida's Chandler Parsons before their NCAA tournament game, he couldn't have known it would sound prophetic. The BYU star told Parsons, the only Gators player to ever hit
two true buzzer-beaters to clinch victories, "no game winning shots tonight." Fredette went on to score 37 points and hit two 3-pointers in double overtime to seal the Cougars' 99-92 win over 10th-seeded Florida on Thursday, the first time they've reached the second round of the tournament in 17 years. Parsons, meanwhile, missed potential game-winners at the end of regulation and the first overtime, and Fredette didn't let Florida get another chance for a dramatic finish.
Fredette surpassed the 30-point plateau for the eighth time this season and the third straight game, coming off 45- and 30-point performances in the Mountain West tournament. Michael Loyd Jr. added a career-high 26 points, pushing BYU to a lead it would hold until a late second-half rally by Florida. Loyd also scored all six of the Cougars' points in the first overtime and hit a 3-pointer to start the second overtime that put BYU ahead to stay.
Kenny Boynton scored 27 points for the Gators (21-13), helping to rally them from a 13-point second-half deficit in their first NCAA tournament game since back-to-back national titles in 2006 and 2007. BYU snapped a streak of seven straight first-round losses in the tournament while ending Florida's 12-game NCAA winning streak. It's the Cougars' first win since 1993, and they haven't gone farther since 1981, when Danny Ainge was on the team.
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